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Ian Rapoport and Tom Pelissero are reporting that the NFL is planning to do a 17-game, 18-week season in 2021-22. While this isn’t a formal announcement, it’s as close as you can get to that as these reporters work for the league-owned media arm and it’s thus impossible to see a scenario where their report is inaccurate.
Players have resisted a season expansion for years. However, this is a time that makes sense for them to agree to it so as to mitigate the impact on the salary cap next season that will come from the fact that there have been little to no fans in the stands this season — and the corresponding drop in shared revenue. Getting one week of extra TV money can help ease that pain now.
Next season will still start when it was originally planned, which means that the Super Bowl will be pushed back a week. Hopefully this brings us closer to a point where Super Bowl Monday and President’s Day get combined into a bona fide national holiday.